Embarrassing own goals are not that uncommon. Every league has them, otherwise extremely high level players sometimes make schoolchildren errors, and it’s just part of the game.
But how many times do fluke own goals decide the outcome of games? That seems like it happens much less often.
Such was the situation for LAFC on Sunday, in their 3-2 win over Real Salt Lake at The Banc. Just before the hour mark, with the game tied 2-2 and LAFC pushing forward on the attack, RSL gave them an absolute gift with a miscue on a backpass between defender Toni Datkovic and goalkeeper David Ochoa.
I think on balance, LAFC deserved to win the game and they did, even if the manner in ultimate victory was a little strange. But they still got a huge dose of luck in getting the victory through that goal.
Perhaps this is the manifestation of “things evening out in the end” or LAFC’s luck turning, or however you want to state it. All season, LAFC have been one of the top teams in the league in several advanced stats on both sides of the ball. Meanwhile, their actual results saw them sinking further and further down the standings. Obviously this team is not playing at the heights they saw in their best parts of 2019 and the 2020 Concacaf Champions League run, but they also seem to have been punished again and again by one mistake in the game that ruined a result. This time, it went the other way and they got a huge hand from their opponent.
There’s still a lot of games to come and if LAFC head right back into a slump to finish the season, this two-game winning run will be a blip in the end, but maybe, just maybe, the soccer gods are bringing things back level and maybe LAFC will find the road to wins a little more smooth moving forward.
What do you think? Leave a comment below.